How to Create a Maximalist Skin-Care Routine, According to Experts

If you consider yourself a product junkie and skinimilism just isn't for you, you may want to try a maximalist routine.

Multiple Skin Care Products in Your Routine
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It's totally normal to feel major FOMO when it comes to skin care. If you're a maximalist, when something new comes out, you'll feel an urgent need to try it all.

As a result, your trustworthy cleanser, moisturizer, and sunscreen routine may have mushroomed into using multiple products each week because there are so. many. different. options. Soon, your go-tos will have phased out, and you'll feel zero guilt about fully leaning into a new maximalist skin-care routine.

In a world where you're constantly told to simplify and Marie Kondo everything from your closet to your beauty routine (hello, skinimalism), being a beauty junkie is difficult. There are new products launching weekly, pushing new ingredients that claim to keep your skin barrier strong and healthy. So how can you not want to try them all?

Turns out, it's okay to use a ton of products — and using a variety of products might even be better for your skin, as long as you work them into your routine in a smart way.

The Benefits of Maximalist Skin Care

While fine-tuning your products to a select few you'll commit to long-term has its advantages (certainly on your bank account), tailoring your beauty routine on a daily basis allows your skin to reap the benefits of introducing new products. "Your skin can become tolerant and stop responding as well to a product," explains Loretta Ciraldo, M.D., a cosmetic dermatologist. "After six months to a year, it's important to reassess." In some cases, your products may not be as effective as you originally hoped, or your skin concerns may change.

How to Try Maximalist Skin Care

If you could never ditch your habit of sampling new skin care products, read on for how the skin pros recommend switching it up and exploring a maximalist skin-care routine.

1. Start with a skin assessment.

Before you start experimenting with a maximalist skin-care routine, determine your skin type and if it can handle using multiple different products. Visiting a dermatologist for a professional assessment of your skin can help you choose more effective products to work into your routine throughout the weeks or months, says Leslie Baumann, M.D., author of The Skin Type Solution, who adds that 80 percent of people cannot correctly identify their skin type.

The most common skin types tend to be dry, oily, combination (both oily and dry), and sensitive. Each skin type has its own set of characteristics that help to determine how to classify your skin; for example, dry skin tends to feel tight and appear flakey. In addition to examining your skin in the a.m., be sure to track how your skin reacts to the new products throughout the day and in the evening to see if you need to adjust your maximalist skin-care routine the following day. This method helps you better tailor products that are a fit for sensitive, acne-prone, or dry skin types without accidentally introducing products that aren't a fit. For instance, if you wake up in the morning and notice your complexion is oilier than usual, then a lighter night cream can help.

2. Add cleansers based on your skin's needs.

Knowing how your skin tends to feel throughout the day can help you better tailor your maximalist cleansing routine, says Dr. Baumann. For instance, "dry types can skip an a.m. cleanser but oily types should not," she explains. Alternating between a gentle, oil-based cleanser or micellar water in the morning and a slightly more powerful nightly face wash can keep your face from drying out. (Keep in mind, you may want to opt for a milk-based face wash for a slightly deeper cleanse if you're washing your face post-morning workout.)

Stash a cleanser in your gym bag or double cleanse on days of extra heavy exercise or when your skin gets oilier before your period. Oiler skin types should wash their faces to help remove access oils from the skin, instead of allowing the oils to further accumulate throughout the day (which can lead to clogged pores and breakouts).

3. Add products based on environmental and lifestyle factors.

Environmental factors (such as temperature, humidity, or pollution) can cause your skin to dry out, break out, or flake up, but having a maximalist skin-care routine with targeted products helps to combat the adverse effects of weather and environmental factors. On hotter days, when air pollution is higher because of more air stagnation, adding more antioxidants to your skin-care routine can help keep your skin calm and soothe inflammation, says Dr. Ciraldo. Consider adding multi-ingredient oils into your maximalist skin-care routine, since they're packed with natural antioxidants. You can also use a powerful vitamin C serum to address higher levels of pollution.

In addition to air quality and temps, your lifestyle choices and activities can impact your skin-care choices. For example, along with an eye cream, use a secondary eye gel such as Dermalogica Awaken Peptide Deputing Eye Gel (Buy it, $56, which is better at addressing discoloration and puffiness that can come from a night out. Or if you're frequently traveling, using a thicker moisturizer during flights can keep skin hydrated afterward.

4. Customize your nightly routine.

The skin tends to replenish itself at night, and the evening hours could be a great time to try new products for a maximalist skin-care routine. For instance, using a retinoid every other day can make it easier to swap in other options such as a face oil, a lactic or glycolic acid peel, or a heavier antioxidant serum that can absorb overnight. That's because it's best to lessen your use of stronger ingredients (such as retinoids) when introducing new products as this will help reduce the potential for adverse reactions. TL;DR: Even if you're a maximalist, proceed with caution when using skin care with strong active ingredients.

Less is more when it comes to nightly masks that promise instant results, adds dermatologist Jennifer Herrmann, M.D. "A product with charcoal can be a great option for detoxifying the skin and eliminating blackheads but used too frequently, they strip the skin of natural oils, leaving it dull and flat." You'll want to mask once or twice a week or on a need basis as opposed to nightly masking.

5. Slowly introduce new products.

Mixing too many ingredients can irritate your skin and leaves little room for products to actually do their work. It can also be harder to figure out which products might be causing breakouts or reactions if you're trying multiple new products at once. Try alternating a moisturizer, while keeping other products consistent (especially if you're new to maximalist skin-care routines). When traveling, simplify the products to only your essentials. "Stop [using] a retinoid and alpha hydroxy acids (aka ingredients that exfoliate the skin) when traveling so your dead skin cell layer can build up to protect your skin from irritants — such as detergent in hotel sheets — on the trip," adds Dr. Baumann.

The Best Products to Add to a Maximalist Skin-Care Routine

Curious to try some skin-care product swaps yourself? Try switching back and forth with some of these products throughout the week for a maximalist skin-care routine:

During the day: Opt for a lighter cleanser such as Monastery's Rose Cleansing Oil (Buy It, $29, For an antioxidant boost, use a nourishing product such as Dr. Loretta's Intense Replenishing Serum (Buy It, $70, Alternate between heavier sunscreen options such as SuperGoop Unseen Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 40 (Buy It, $38, when you're spending the weekend outdoors, versus tinted moisturizing sunscreens such as Vive Sana Daily Protezione (Buy It, $55,, which can be an easy all-in-one product for the office.

At night: To get rid of makeup, use a gentle yet effective cleanser such as Farmacy's Green Clean Makeup Meltaway Cleansing Balm (Buy It, $36, Alternate between gentle retinol products such as the new StriVectin S.T.A.R. Light Retinol Night Oil (Buy It, $99, and luxury oils such as True Botanicals Renew Pure Radiance Oil (Buy It, $110,, or detoxifying masks such as the Detoxifying Charcoal Mask (Buy It, $36, For acne-prone skin, switch it up between a gentle salicylic face wash such as the Pink Grapefruit Oil-Free Acne Wash Foaming Scrub (Buy It, $12.99, and a thin layer of Differin Gel (Buy It,$14.99,

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